Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Ease of doing business: FCT set to harmonize overlapping laws

Authorities of the Federal Capital Territory Administration are looking to harmonize all overlapping laws and regulations within the various secretariats, departments and agencies that were militating against the ease of doing business in the territory.

Heads of affected agencies say they are looking to collaborate with relevant stakeholders in order to streamline recurring processes affecting smooth business operations in FCT.

This was part of the decisions reached at the FCT Technical Workshop and Engagement Forum on Ease of Doing Business held in Abuja.

Speaking at the event, the FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, said improving the ease of doing business was at the root of Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of the current administration with a significant progress already recorded in the last four years.

Bello said he was optimistic that with consistent dialogue and focus on ultimate goals, in a few years to come, processes and interventions will be institutionalized to ensure that the FCT becomes a model.

He also expressed the desire for a small working group involving key agencies within the FCTA and the area council chairmen to resolve issues raised at the workshop, stressing that all businesses and services ultimately, are domiciled in the area councils.

The minister explained that whatever intervention done at the highest level, if it does not trickle to the Area Council level where businesses are domiciled, the effects would not be felt.

He also commended the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council, PEBEC, adding that the purpose for its establishment was justified and so far the organization has done the country proud.

Bello assured the Special Adviser to the President on Ease of Doing Business, Dr. Jumoke Oduwole, that the FCTA will partner with her team so as to ensure that the laudable objective of the initiative comes to fruition.

Earlier, in her presentation, Dr Oduwole said that the Ease of Doing Business intervention is intended to change people’s perception that it is difficult to do business in Nigeria and to remove bureaucratic bottlenecks so that businesses can thrive. This, she said, is being done through reduction in the cost and the time it takes to do business.

While commending the FCTA for improvements in its Ease of Doing Business profile, the presidential aide stressed the need to do more, especially in the area of enforcing contracts.

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